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******* of suckling cheeks
taste of wine gone vinegar
left out too long exposed
to sunlight

twice ways between nowhere
we drank a bottle or four
before resigning ourselves
to defeat

we woke so many mornings
in drawn shade sunlight
with our heads split twain
by buzzing

we'd never known what it
was to taste hurt or defeat
until we likened our arguments
to chemistry
David Plantinga Jul 2021
Desiccated youth has bones like cork,
So porous strong in cells.
Lost time perfuses emptiness.
And heavy dolor quells.
David Plantinga Jul 2021
Supine, roads sprawl so lazily
That they collapse to planes,
Not aiding stumbling travelers
As knotted sinews strain.
David Plantinga Jul 2021
The trouble started on the day
After the day before.  
Youth and hope and love decay,
And regret won’t restore.
It seems this old and weary world
Holds much more bad than good.  
I’d have assayed, but I was hurled
In this life before I could.  
A world of cloud and bitterness,
A life of scrape and thorn,  
So who would ever acquiesce
Ever to be born?  
Because briars outnumber flowers
By ten to one at least,
Weakness humbles mighty powers.
Famine goes before the feast.  
But feasts are more than fillings ups,
And hunger’s just a pinch.
And emptiness can’t stopper cups,
And straitening can’t cinch.  
Bounty and joy are plenitude,
And destitution lack,
So revel in what’s nice, or lewd,
No loss can take it back.  
A single flower fortifies
To brush away the burs.    
Striving wins because it tries.  
Forlorn despairing errs.
Terence, this is stupid stuff: no beer here, just entropy.  I put a trochee in the second foot of the first line of the fourth stanza for the harshness of it.  I also meant the double plural in the first line of the fifth stanza.   I also meant to double up on the "evers".
David Plantinga Jul 2021
Badinage and Persiflage
Make such a merry pair,
Chatting and bantering all day.
No spiteful gossip there.  

Each goes without acquaintances.
Each has one single friend.  
As solitary sprites, they speak
Of words, without an end.
David Plantinga Jun 2021
Some thieves have burgled every house;
The rich are sorrowing
At sacrilege and heirlooms lost,
Spoons, silks and sapphire rings.  
The poorer tenants mourn as well;
Their losses are their doom.  
Without the coin for food or rent,
Hunger and eviction loom.  
Just down the street, a misanthrope
Who lives in an old tub
Cackles at their lamentations,
And gives his hands a rub.  
He used to own a battered cup,
That and a bowl for alms,
But then he saw an urchin drink
Right out of his cupped palms.  
He learned that cups were luxury,
And threw the thing away.  
He’s happier in poverty,
And that’s just how he’ll stay.  
He boasts to passers-by he’s safe,
Since thieves can never steal
Knowledge or virtue from the good.
Wisdom alone is real.  
How better for that mendicant
If thieves could somehow take
Self-satisfaction from such prigs.
Oh mellow him for pity’s sake.
If I recall correctly, Diogenes Laertes told this story about Diogenes the Cynic, minus the moral.   Too many Diogenes’s!
David Plantinga Jun 2021
A drunkard’s guzzled several days,
And staggering outside,  
Dull and disoriented, seeks,
But cannot find, a guide.  
The hour proclaimed is even six,
Twice daily otium.  
The arrow hangs at bottom rim
Like a dead pendulum.  
The birth and dying of the light
Are symmetry in dim.
The day is leaching into night,
Or morning’s failing him.
1-2-1-2-When you have pollen allergies,
Your first reaction when you sneeze isn't to chop down all the trees;
it's to move out of the breeze,
you see.
A mental mic check for when you feel like burning the Forrest
David Plantinga Jun 2021
Black shadows are all sycophants
That mimic every shape.  
White shadows seal their bearers up,
And bury what they ape.  
Black shadows curl off thick sunlight,
And launch themselves from dust.  
White shadows flake from winter’s breath,
Congealed as vapor’s rust.      
In two dimensions, or in three,
Shade and snow are booleans,
Dark in intersection tracing truth.
And snow in difference.
I did have a line with eight syllables in the last stanza when it should have had only six.  I could try to sell that synaeresis makes it one vowel, an additional syllable at the end of the line to make it a tetrameter line with a weak ending but nobody will buy that.  I ******* up.
David Plantinga Jun 2021
The crystals groan, whenever crushed
Under a melting tread.
Snow faithfully fulfilled its oath,
And did just what it said.  

In recompense for stinging cold,
This mantle vowed to be
Finer than the finest of white sands
And never slippery.
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